Virginians eager to hear whether Timothy M. Kaine will jump into next year’s Senate race will have to wait a while longer: No decision is coming until at least next week.
Since Sen. James Webb (D) announced a month ago that he would not run for reelection in 2012, many prominent Democrats have urged the former governor and current Democratic National Committee chairman to run, but Kaine has taken his time on the matter.
Now that Kaine has returned from a family vacation, some race-watchers had hoped he might have an announcement to make this week. But he won’t, nor will he make his intentions clear when he attends a tribute dinner for ex-Rep. Rick Boucher (D) Saturday night.
“The governor will not be making any announcements about the Senate this week and he will not be making any news on the Senate race at the event honoring Rick Boucher in Southwest Virginia this weekend,” said an official authorized to speak for Kaine, who requested anonymity to discuss the decisionmaking process. “Rick Boucher is one of Governor Kaine’s closest friends and political allies and he was eager to attend this event honoring him long before there was a Senate vacancy in Virginia.”
If Kaine begs off, Boucher is one of a handful of other Democrats considered to be a potential Senate candidate, though Boucher himself has given no indication that he would be interested in the race. Former Rep. Tom Perriello (D) has said he would consider running if Kaine doesn’t.
Be sure to read The Fix’s take on Kaine’s decisionmaking here.